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North High holds gold

March 03, 2001

North High holds gold



By AL DITZEL

alfredd@herald-mail.com

WESTMINSTER, Md. - North Hagerstown's Wayne Boward and Frederick's Akil Patterson have both experienced winning their final high school match in the Maryland state wrestling tournament but not taking the top prize.

That was until Saturday.

Boward, a three-time third-place winner, and Patterson, a third-place winner as a junior and a fifth-place winner as a sophomore, each enjoyed their final match in their high school careers, winning state gold at Western Maryland College.

Boward (32-0 this year and 131-9 in his career) handled North Carroll's two-time state champ, Fran Jackson, 8-2 in the 4A/3A 145-pound final. The Hub senior, who finished third in the 2A/1A tournament three times while wrestling at Williamsport, took down Jackson three seconds into their bout.

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"I saw in (Jackson's) semifinal that he hung his head, so I snapped it down to grab a single leg,'' Boward said. "I knew from that point on I'd win.''

Not only was Boward quick for the takedown, he also dominated Jackson from the offensive position. He rode Jackson hard the final 1 minute, 57 seconds of the first period.

Starting from bottom, Boward quickly reversed Jackson, then put him to his back, building a 6-0 lead.

Jackson scored with an escape early in the third period, but Boward quickly took him down again and then released him at the buzzer for the final score.

Afterward, Boward jumped into North Hagerstown coach Greg Slick's arms, shook hands with his opponent and then took a few seconds for a quick prayer.

"I had to thank God,'' Boward said. "I wanted to thank my uncle, who passed away, thank my mom, my dad, my friends and my fans. But I had to take a second to thank God.''

Later, Patterson claimed 4A/3A 275 gold via disqualification in his final. Patterson (33-0 this year, 105-22 career) used an escape, a stalling point and a takedown for a 4-0 lead after two periods against Parksdale junior Daniel Muir.

In the third period, Patterson began to pull away as Muir was penalized two more times for stalling. Then, Muir was disqualified for throwing a punch at Patterson.

"No, this isn't really icing on the cake for me,'' Patterson said. "I think the greatest match I've ever wrestled was my win this year against (Williamsport's) Ryan McDonald in the Hub Cup (tournament at North Hagerstown).''

"Frederick wrestling is on its way back, I promise,'' Patterson said. "This a step in the right direction.''

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